Council Publishes Annual Accounts

The Town Hall

The Council’s finances are in better shape than expected. The Authority yesterday published its accounts for 2011/12.

For the first time there’s over £2.1m in the General fund, which is there as a rainy day account for unforeseen problems.

Savings and underspends have boosted that pot by £421,000.

The bank account balance is down by £4.1 million to £4.6 million. That’s because there was a lot of cash going through the account for the school build.

In line with Government cutbacks, the Council’s received £330,000 less this year from Whitehall. In total, the Authority has around £6.5m to spend, which includes income from Council Tax and payment for its services.

The Government handed over just over £3m for the Education Grant. £2.4m of that is deployed to the school.

There’s also around £26,000 of debts which they don’t think they’ll recover and have been written off, including £18,000 related to the airport.

The Tourist board has made some of the biggest savings. £93,000 of the money allocated to spend on tourism wasn’t used, partly because there’s not been a Tourism Officer in post.

And Park House saved £39,000 of their budgeted spend. More people were able to pay for their care and that boosted income, while fewer people needed the Home Care service than had been expected.

But Sports and Leisure services cost more than was planned. The Pool was overspent by £25,000. They received a big and unexpected electricity bill. The Sports Hall and Multi Use Games Area was £17,000 over budget and there was less MUGA use than had been expected altough £2,000 income from ‘Active Scilly’ memberships helped reduced that loss.

The Council saved £12,000 on street sweeping, because they couldn’t do it for 3 months when the road sweeper broke.

They were £44,000 under spent on waste collection and disposal too, because of a reduced electricity bill for the incinerator. It was out of action for part of the winter. They also got more cash in for recycling items than was expected.

The six senior Council officers, not all of whom are full time, cost just under £0.5m. That’s £30,000 down on the previous year because the separate roles of Children’s Services Director and the Community Services Director have been merged into one.

These accounts still need to be ratified by the auditor and locals do have the right to challenge them. They did last year and the Town Hall set aside £49,000 for the extra auditing costs for the 2010 accounts following public objections.

If things get tough, the Council does have some antique assets. The Old Wesleyan Chapel contains a pair of 18 inch globes made in 1799 and 1845 as well as antique chairs, swords, rifles and a George I coat of arms. They’re worth around £106,000.


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